Photo courtesy of Christian James.

For diners looking for a different place to eat next year, a new restaurant is coming to the Joinery Hotel Downtown in January. 

On Jan. 26, Christian James will open in what used to be the hotel’s original restaurant, or, the Whale. The eatery will offer hardwood-fired grill cooking with a complementary wine and cocktail program.

The creators of the venture, Kimberley Ashlee and Joshua Haugh — who are caterers based in Pittsburgh — chose to create a fictional character, Christian James, who is motivated by food and wants to bring his favorite dishes to guests.

The rotating menu will include items such as Chicken Mole Chilaquiles, which features braised chicken, mole with Mexican chocolate and mixed roasted chili peppers. If you are looking for a vegetarian-friendly option, then the Vegetable Lasagna Stack will be a great choice.

In addition to the main courses, Christian James will serve an assortment of appetizers such as Shishito Peppers, Charcuterie and Grilled Chicken Wings.

The Gothic-revival building was the former home of the Salvation Army of Western Pennsylvania before it became the Distrikt Hotel and then the Joinery Hotel this year.

Photo courtesy of Christian James.

Pittsburgh’s Joinery Hotel retained the Specialty Group to find a culinary concept for their in-house restaurant and catering.

“The requirements and versatility we needed for this project were extensive,” says Terri Sokoloff, with the Specialty Group.

“We approached Kim and Josh because they fit the criteria perfectly, and this was a great opportunity for them to showcase their talents. I have utilized Kimberley Ashlee Catering for a few private events, and they impressed me and have extensive knowledge of hotel food and beverage.”

Jason Phox is a journalist in the Pittsburgh area sharing important information with the people of the Steel City. He enjoys writing, photography, and mostly comic books.